School embraces culture for Harmony Day

By Madeleine Caccianiga

Guthrie Street Primary School celebrated in a sea of orange yesterday for Harmony Day.

Showcasing the message of ‘‘respect, kindness, community and hope’’, the school focused on its Indian heritage.

The school’s Koori EAL learning support teacher Jenni Pugh said Harmony Day was about belonging.

‘‘Over the last two years we have really wanted to celebrate because at Guthrie Street we have about 30 different nationalities, between our parents and our children born in all different countries,’’ Ms Pugh said.

Wanting to show off a different culture that people might not know a lot about, Ms Pugh said the school had more than 20 students of Indian heritage.

‘‘We have Bhangra Beats from Melbourne who have travelled to be here with us today to present their culture to our children,’’ Ms Pugh said.

The performance group interacted with students, who were encouraged to join in with the traditional dance moves.

Ms Pugh said the celebrations continued into the afternoon with a reading of the Mem Fox book I am an Australian too.

‘‘From there we went into an activity, discussing and illustrating a map of Australia to showcase why we are proud to be Australian and what we love about Australia,’’ she said.

‘‘We’re very lucky with our diversity and it’s amazing how all the staff and all the kids just naturally come together and support each other.’’